Redefining happiness on your own terms – How Purnima combined Persistence with Passion to achieve it

For most people, the happiest day in their job is often their first day at the office, or the day they receive their first paycheck, or when they get a recognition or award in front of the whole office, or on getting their first promotion. However, for Purnima, it was the day she decided to quit her job. Sounds bizarre? Well, the rest of her story is also equally interesting and a roller coaster ride of how she found her calling, not by coincidence but by preparation and hard work.

Happiness has many faces. Sometimes in the form of finding a 500 rupee note in the pocket of your old jeans, or in this case for Purnima Tyagi, on being her own boss – as she believed in herself enough to follow the career path that makes her who she is today. It takes a lot of confidence and guts to give a shape to something you want and this lady is an epitome of self-reliance on the next level. 

 On her early days of career:

I started my MBA journey with FIIB and chose Marketing and International Business as my Major and Minor specializations respectively. I was really fascinated about international Business and initially wanted to pursue a career in that domain, but during the placement season at FIIB, I got the opportunity to work with Kent RO Systems Ltd. and I grabbed it.  Soon after, I was working as a Management Trainee through campus placement. I was the only girl among 37 guys in Kent RO team for field job of Delhi NCR. It was a field job and I was not completely satisfied with it, still, I gave my best there.” After completing 6 months there, she was amongst the top 3 Management Trainees pan-India. She got a certificate of excellence along with a raise. 

“That was a very special moment for me and till date, I cherish it much. Even after such recognition, I was not fully satisfied with what I was doing. I applied in ICICI Bank as a Deputy Manager. I was happy with this job role as I did not have to field it out to get recognition. Plus, I was happy with the profile. Here also, my work was appreciated but still, I was not feeling ‘as one’ with what I was doing. I realised that I do not want to continue with the job. I wasn’t really happy. So I put in the papers. It was cancelled at first by my manager and somehow my manager convinced me to stay back.”

One fine day…

You know you are made for bigger things when you’re never satisfied with a mundane job. To be able to gather the guts to take a leap of faith and start anything from scratch isn’t for the faint-hearted. But then, Purnima was among those who was always a problem-solver, she knew only she could solve this problem for herself – to be happier and more satisfied with what she was doing. She knew ideas won’t just come to her if she doesn’t start looking. Every day she used to explore new ideas and their feasibility; Solve multiple equations in her head to understand whether the idea that she wanted to work on would sustain long term or not, and then one day, everything clicked together (of course in her head, but that was just the beginning!)

“I got the idea for ‘Happy Inviting’ and I was awake all night long just to figure out what to do next in order to translate these thoughts into reality. I started working on the idea and made a business plan. I made it a point to meet my Professor, Mr Jones Mathew and discuss it with him as he was my Marketing Maestro. He guided me really well and gave his inputs on the business strategy. I collected some industry data and charted out my own analysis of the facts. I did some market surveys through google forms and through some physical interviews as well. 

What happened next?

There’s a reason why she was fixated on her idea, it occurred to her that while Indians have a tendency to hire only experts for a wedding – be it food, decoration, beautification and all, when it comes to wedding cards, people just print cards and send it across. In most cases, inviting in person consumes a lot of time, and sometimes done in a rush, often adding to the restlessness of the family.

“That’s where Happy Inviting comes in. But it was also important for me to run a pilot test and learn how open the Indian market is to the change in this concept of inviting.  So, I  wanted to introduce my idea to people that there could be a group of well-groomed individuals who could  go in person and extend an invitation on behalf of the family to those who otherwise would have received only a printed or e-invitation. The first three months went flat and that disappointed me but eventually, I started getting orders. Once I knew the pulse of the market, I started diversifying and added some more services that I could offer along.  I started offering services for digital invitations, GIFs, videos and similar things. We now also offer cards in the form of a basket where one can put in goodies while inviting someone”

The story doesn’t end here:

Once you taste the happiness of being your own boss, you build an appetite for it. That’s what happened to Purnima too. She decided to do more. With the newly developed interest in designing, she pursued a diploma in Fashion Designing from NIFT. Then, things took a new turn. “I started my own clothing brand ‘Choga’ as I decided to put my degree from NIFT to use. I learnt a lot of Photoshop to express my sense of fashion better and now I have my own boutique where I follow a theme and then I photoshoot them. I am living my dream and I am happy from the depths of my heart. There is no turning back now and I am hopeful for a beautiful future. Just picture perfect!”

The road ahead:

“Remember I said I had the biggest smile on my face the day I decided to quit my job, well, deciding that wasn’t easy, I knew the risk I was going to take. It was scary. Now that I have seen what it’s like, believe me, it’s much scarier. Having said that, I’m also very confident that I’ll steer both my ventures towards success. The current COVID-19 scenario has put all of us on a back foot, but that didn’t stop me. I have set up a home office and in the meantime working on new designs and collections. I am also using this time to build my brand digitally.  The trick is to not let the crises scare you. Adapt, learn, and move forward. That’s how you will be successful, and that’s how you’ll be satisfied. 

This is the story of Purnima Tyagi who redefined her happiness. FIIB wishes her the best of luck! Have a story you want to share with us? Get in touch with us on alumni@fiib.edu.in